Monday, May 18, 2009

Adapting

So, I’ve been struggling with this post. Mostly because I want this blog to be all fun and games, but to accurately represent my PC experience, it cannot always be that way.

Additionally, I don’t want anyone taking my personal observations too negatively, but in the words of a famous song, you can’t always get what you want.

Firstly, I live in Zaqatala. It about as progressive as you can get in non-Baku, Azerbaijan.

Secondly, adapting to expectations and a culture different from my own is ridiculously hard. General living, ya, I knew that would be tough. The lack of housing insulation and intermittent gas threw me for a loop. Using water instead of toilet paper, a bit different, but okay. It is the adapting to everything else that gets me.

In Azerbaijan, I don’t drink alcohol (unless I am with other Americans). In Zaq, if I am out after dark, I am normally with a male friend or I am walking straight home. In other regions, I won’t walk alone after dark. There are less than a handful of places in Zaq that allow women patrons and I will never wear shorts here. Every shirt I own is as modest as it gets.

Of course, there are a dozen other things I could write about, but you get the point. Living in a culture different than your own is hard stuff.